High-end LG plasmas fuse THX and Netflix

LG combines the first plasma capable of streaming Netflix with THX display certification.

LG's higher-end PS80 plasmas will be the first to stream Netflix. LG

LG and Netflix have already announced that select TVs produced by the Korean electronics company will be the first to stream Netflix's Watch Now video service without the need for an additional set-top box. Today LG fleshed out details on specific models, including two plasmas with THX display certification.

The company will put Netflix and a host of other broadband content options into a pair of plasma TVs, the PS80 models detailed here, as well as the LH50 series of LCDs. The two sizes in the PS80 series include the 50-inch 50PS80 and the 60-inch 60PS80. Both are available in June, and prices were not disclosed.

Like the PG60 series we reviewed last year, the PS80 models also offer THX display certification. If the 2008 sets are any indication, that certification will lead to improved color accuracy.

In addition to Netflix streaming, the PS80 plasmas will be able to access YouTube videos, utilize Yahoo widgets--onscreen applications with real-time info like weather, stock tickers, financial news, Yahoo! Video, Flickr images, etc--and connect to a networked PC or USB device via a port on the TV to access photos and music (but not video). They utilize an Ethernet connection for all this broadband content; the company does not offer a specific wireless option, although third-party wireless bridges should work.

In case you're not happy with THX mode, the PS80 models also boast extensive picture controls, including the same 10-point IRE system and full color management controls we liked on the company's 2008 models. A new "picture wizard" is available as well, which employs a series of onscreen test patterns to ease user calibration.

About the author

Section Editor David Katzmaier has reviewed TVs at CNET since 2002. He is an ISF certified, NIST trained calibrator and developed CNET's TV test procedure himself. Previously David wrote reviews and features for Sound & Vision magazine and eTown.com. He is known to two people on Twitter as "The Cormac McCarthy of consumer electronics."


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